How mermaids reproduce

Q: How do Mermaids reproduce? Do they lay their eggs on the side of a rock or something?

Just how do mermaids accomplish reproduction?A: Just how mermaids produce little mermaids is an issue that is usally overlooked in most of the tales of tails. Since the majority of mermaid stories are for adolescent – or younger – girls, it is understandable why reproduction is bypassed.

Nonetheless, merfolk reproduction is touched upon in Cye Cho’s Florence Waverly series where we learn that mer-babies are hatched from eggs. The mechanics thereof, have – so far – not been touched upon.

Meanwhile, in the Mer Tales series by Brenda Pandos, it is intimated that anatomical differences aside, the process is not too unlike human methodology. The main difference is the gestation period is greatly foreshortened. Mermaids have barely enough time to eat a gallon or two of pickle-flavoured ice cream and attend their baby shower before they are holding a wee one in their arms.

Moving on to mermaid novels for adults – which are fewer and further in between – the subject is seldom dealt with. Only S.K. Munt’s Fairytail Saga seems to come close to a realistic portrayal. So far, most other writers seem to stick with silly ridiculous notions as to how breeding is accomplished.

Outwith the realm of mermaid – and merman – stories, George Parsons[1], Director of Fishes at the Shedd Aquarium[2] in Chicago, has a go at things in an article about how mermaids have sex on His concept has mermaids and mermen getting together on a quarterly basis to release eggs and sperm in the water. The mer-eggs are thus fertilized and the mermaids & mermen swim off to do whatever it is they do.

When these eggs hatch, the larval merfolk swim upwards to hide and develop amongst the plankton. Although this is a feasible scenario, the thought of baby merfolk being scooped up & eaten by larger animals would  quite upsetting to many readers.

The primary objective of this FAQ is not to examine every author’s notions as to how mermaids ‘do it’[3]. Instead, this author is writing this in order to explain how things are done in the world of Colony Island.

The Basics of Reproduction

First, it is necessary to establish the fact that mermaids – and of course, mermen – can have both legs and tails, though not at the same time. In addition, they can ‘do it’ both human-style or mer-style. Anatomical differences prevent a ‘half and half’ approach.

The merfolk of Colony Island, as well as feral merfolk, find moonlit beaches to be quite appealing for mating and/or breeding. It is, however, not necessary to have this setting as numbers of merfolk got their start in the bedroom simply because the weather turned had foul during the days surrounding the full moon. While mermaids can will themselves to ovulate, they can’t put things on hold once the breeding flush appears.

Ferals don’t have the bedroom option since most tend to consider doing it human-style as an unspeakable abomination. In the event of foul weather, they’ll swim offshore to a suitable depth in order to take care of business.

Once fertilization is achieved, mermaids – like human females – go though a nine-month gestation period. The vast majority will elect to give birth offshore since, in her natural form, a mermaid’s pelvis is radically different. This facilitates and easy and almost painless delivery.

A more detailed account of sex amongst merfolk will be explored in a forthcoming FAQ.

[1] No known relation to the author of Urban Mermaid. On the other hand, if he’s a ‘Parsons’ and a ‘biologist’ and is willing to discuss sex amongst merfolk, then he is obviously a long-lost cousin.

[2] I visited the Shedd Aquarium when I was in Chicago for BookExpo/BookCon 2016. It’s a fantastic place. You ought to go.

[3] Lizzy Acker has a humorous take on things in The Talk: How to Explain Mermaid Sex to Your Kids.

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